Photo: UD Trucks
A modified UD Trucks Quon demonstrates level 4 automation at a Japanese agricultural facility.

Volvo Group to sell UD Trucks to Isuzu Motors

Dec. 23, 2019
The sale is expected to be worth $2.3 billion and kick off a global technology partnership between the OEMs.

As the first step of a non-binding strategic alliance to establish a global technology partnership, Volvo Group is transferring ownership of UD Trucks to Isuzu Motors Ltd. The sale is estimated to be worth $2.3 billion (250 million yen) and will increase Volvo Group’s net cash position by about $212 million.

The Japan-based UD Trucks— formerly known as Nissan Diesel— makes medium- and heavy-duty trucks and produced the world’s first vehicle-based selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system for the Quon in 2004.

Volvo Group said in the press release that this move will “accelerate growth by leveraging greater volumes and complementary capabilities” between the companies. When the sale finalizes—expected by the end of 2020, the acquisition is poised to strengthen Isuzu’s heavy-duty presence in Japan and other international markets, while providing UD Trucks with “the best long-term conditions.”

“The Volvo Group and Isuzu Motors have a well-established relationship on medium-duty trucks in Japan based on mutual respect, shared values and win-win spirit. We see great potential to extend our cooperation within technology, sales and service as well as other areas going forward, for the benefit of our customers and business partners,” says Martin Lundstedt, president and CEO of the Volvo Group. “Our UD Trucks colleagues have done a great job to improve performance in recent years, and the alliance opens up a great opportunity to continue the successful journey.” 

The partnership will also extend to light trucks and combine both companies’ expertise in the rapidly changing commercial vehicle space, where technology such as electrification, automation and data analytics will play instrumental roles.

In 2018, UD Trucks announced its innovation roadmap "Fujin & Raijin. Vision 2030” to deliver Smart Logistics solutions in the next decade. In Aug. 2019, UD Trucks partnered with logistics firm Nippon Express and Hokkaido agriculture cooperative Hokuren to conduct the first Level 4 autonomous demonstration on a Japanese public road using a specially adapted L4 heavy-duty Quon.

“We intend to derive the full value from each other's different specialties across product and geographical strongholds,” said Masanori Katayama, president and representative director of Isuzu Motors. Our collaboration will actively contribute to service improvements and strengthened customer satisfaction as well as to prepare ourselves for the forthcoming logistics revolution."

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